Sunday, November 15, 2009


I am keenly awaiting the arrival of a dedicated ebook reader - one small enough to take anywhere. I am currently investigating the Kindle, but until the new version hits Oz (currently only available in the US) I will have to be patient. The portability and the current nature of titles is what appeals to me - over Project Gutenberg and other copyright free sources. They are fantastic, but limited for young readers and I think this might be the future for them.
Although I love nothing more than curling up with a real book, I think that young people will be wanting to access their books electronically.
There is enormous debate by we oldies, but if they are reading and enjoying reading, does it matter the medium they choose to access??

I want to properly investigate the realities of reading in this way. So far, I have only read downloaded books on my laptop - not my preferred method by a long shot. However, this is going to be reality for many very soon.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Online video

YouTube and TeacherTube can provide rich resources for so many curriculum areas and interest areas. School networks can be problematic when linking to video - it often freezes. Respecting copyright also becomes an issue. We now have Clickview and with 24/7 are able to add video content which students are able to access through compressed files - much healthier for our network. Also, it is and easy matter for students to embed short segments of video into presentations.
Although online video is a really poular format for students, they do encounter problems of seamless access.


I have been accessing Radio National podcasts for years. There is an incredible wealth of material available and although some programs are too long to be used in their entirety with students, it is easy to focus in on relevant elements. By adding RSS feeds, these are particularly helpful for senior students, in Biology, Modern History and Economics. They have access to material which is authoritative, current and interesting. Although it is not necessary to have an mp3 player, the portability of this medium allows for access when walking the dog or sitting in the car.
The quality of some podcasts for students needs to be checked (as for all resources).

Students love making their own podcasts and software like audacity makes this a simple process and readily accessible.


This site is so slow to add that it becomes frustrating. I did eventually access and created a Rolly, but I would probably use delicious in preference, simply for speed of access. However, as these applications are constantly changing and updating, I will continue to check out Rollyo, as I really like its clean appearance.


Wikis provide a fantastic avenue for application of web 2.0 with students. I really like the possibilities for higher order thinking and evaluation skills which are required to genuinely assess the quality of material uploaded and shared.
Again, we have problems with access as so many spaces are blocked, but once set up, the students just love being able to share their information and thoughts.

I have found that they are far more likely to state their thoughts via this medium than to speak them aloud, in case they are 'wrong'.

I also see applications for using wikis in the library - just need more time to develop the ideas further.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

RSS feeds

These could have so many applications that would be useful for students that it could be very easy to be overwhelmed. Senior Modern History and Economics students could get feeds from so many reliable and credible sources to keep them up to date on their topics of study. Our Library home page could have feeds through from reviewing sites and information about latest releases.

I have the feeds coming directly to my iGoogle page so they are obvious as soon as I open there.

Proceed with caution - too much information!!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


I have similar comments to the MySpace blog. My school is highly unlikely to unblock either fo these applications, so my use would only ever be personal - and that probably won't happen soon.

My Space

Frankly I don't have enough time for my real friends and don't feel the need. I like the idea of groups communicating, but, in a school setting there are more appropriate tools available for group discussion and interaction. I prefer to keep 'work tasks' separate from 'social'. There are enough distractions as it is.


Again, this is a useful tool for organising photos and then sharing them. I have used this to share photos with friends overseas for quite some time.


I have been intending to export all of my work favourites here for ages, but now I have done it! It is extremely helpful to have the notes to go with each bookmark and the tags make retrieval very easy. I will need to continue working through to put notes on each URL, but I will get there.

It is also very useful when my profile at work crashes and has to be rebuilt. Now I am able to easily keep my favourites forever!!

Monday, September 14, 2009


I love LibraryThing! As yet I have only created a small personal library as I need to convert my written reading records gathered over many years of English teaching and teacher librarianship. This will be a school holiday project - but at least I am underway.
I love the ability to share reading, to quickly have suggested supplementary titles and authors and to be able to assign real - person tags, rather than restrictive and not instinctive formal subject headings.
I have set up my school Bookclub students in a closed room and we share our reading between meeting times.
I am in the process of considering incorporating LibraryThing into our LMS but there are compatibility issues to be sorted out - a work in progress.

Image generators

Although these are fun and would be fantastic for students to use to jazz up their presentations, I am not convinced that I would use them myself a great deal. The selections mostly have that 'cartoon look' which has limited applications for serious research - for me anyway.
I also found that some of the recommemded Image Generators contain unsuitable material for me to use in my school. I think that they may need some deep checking before letting students loose on them.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Second life

I can see lots of applications in the classroom. I have an idea brewing where I could have the students create their avatar for a chosen historical period and to build the historical world and time period around this avatar. This would be a great way to build social history. I haven't worked out how to do it yet - still investigating and as most of the sites are blocked at school, I'll have to do this at home.

Monday, September 7, 2009


I am not particulary fussed about iGoogle. I know that it can be handy to have my selections and links at my fingertips, but, while at work, I prefer the ease of our staff intranet page as that is where the majority of my quick links reside. At home, I have set up my iGoogle and it is more useful there for personal links etc.

Google Maps and Google books

I have used both of these a lot. I love Google maps and the different views available. How did we ever manage without?

Google books is an invaluable tool in a school library - the extracts, the sumaries, the suggested reading lists are fantastic for suggesting books for students and teachers and for creating displays.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Using Google Docs

Although it is great to be able to share documents, it really is only another tool for doing what we are able to do already. This means there is familiarity with the process to start with - which is good too!

One gripe - Google's duopoly rivals Microsoft in that to be able to share, all participants must be members - even though it says that any email address is accepted.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What is Web 2.0?

I read with interest the Larry Sanger article on Web 2.0 in education. This is obviously an extreme, but I can already see small elements emerging in Secondary education. Given that education as a whole changes very slowly, I wonder if we would, or could, ever reach this level of independence.
The online environment, whether through mobile devices or desktop devices, is obviously here, though a computer/device is still only a 21st century pencil. It is what can be done with it to enhance learning and skills acquisition for students which must be the measure for accountability.
The potential is there. It's the practical application that is the interesting bit!

Monday, August 24, 2009

First post

In establishing this blog, I will record my thoughts about the application of Web 2.0 tools in the Library. I think they have enormous potential, so am keen to put them into use.